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EUROSION: Case Study: Isle of Sylt (Germany)

Type of Entry: Case Study

The vulnerable island Sylt has a multi-functional socio-economic nature and is covered by a mixture of natural and cultural land uses. Besides high-level standards in living and recreation facilities, Sylt offers unique aspects of a biotope.

The entire western coast is eroding. The island loses the majority of this sand through storm tides. Waves and tides continuously erode and move away material from the sandy shore and foreshore area, causing structural erosion. The dune cliffs are affected only at irregular intervals during storm surges.

The central part of Sylt has always been strongly protected in the past and still is (because of the high economic values) by hard coastal protection measures. The hard measures have turned out not always to be effective in stopping the erosion. Although the central part of Sylt is reasonably stable, partly because of the hard measures taken there, in the long run these measures will fail. Nourishments are now needed to protect these hard coastal constructions. Furthermore, the nourishments are effective in stopping the coastline from receding and their performance is satisfactory. At Westerland, nourishments have to be repeated every six years.

Keywords: Beach protection, Tools and techniques for beach management
EUROSION Case Study: Isle of Sylt (Germany) (1.084.624 Bytes)
Contact: Paul Sistermans; Odelinde Nieuwenhuis
DHV group
Telephone: +31 (0)33 468 37 00 / +31 (0)33 468 37 48